Begum Zia's stand | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, January 11, 2010 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, January 11, 2010

Begum Zia's stand

My sincere thanks to The Daily Star and its editorial board for publishing an editorial on January 3, 2010 entitled “Begum Zia must not prejudge Delhi outcome. She ought to raise such issues in parliament.” It appears our political leaders will never behave responsibly.
When they are in opposition, their stand is different. It is sad that they are not prepared to understand the hard realities of the prevailing situation that the opinion is sharply divided with no mandate to back up the demand for the sake of the working class and the poor. Parliament has lost many days of productivity and has caused much disruption in the parliamentary activities. Naturally, the common people don't want war. That is understood.
But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a family based dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All we have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.
The true test of the Bangladeshi ideal is whether we're able to recognise our failings and then rise together to meet the challenges of our time. Whether we allow ourselves to be shaped by events and history, or whether we act to shape them. President Barack Obama said, "I always believe that ultimately, if people are paying attention, then we get good government and good leadership. And when we get lazy, as a democracy and civically start taking shortcuts, then it results in bad government and politics." As Mahatma Gandhi said, “I suppose leadership at one time meant muscles; but today it means getting along with people.”
So long as a person is not capable of self-renewal, she/he is not a living being.

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